The point of departure of this lecture is whether one can make sense of consumer law. The fact that consumer protection makes sense, is undisputed (albeit that trade and industry commonly approach the need for consumer protection from a rather egoistic perspective: how to make a profit and deal with consumer concerns).
In order to ‘make sense’ of consumer law two questions are asked: (1) what is the common measure of consumer law, and (2) what is the truth about consumer law?
Consumer law centres around information, authority and control, but in enforcing it a strong interest group seems to be forgotten: consumers themselves.
There is one thing that would boost consumer confidence in the achievements of the internal market: European consumer law should be made more simple and easily accessible. Consumer law is – as mentioned – serious business. It should provide uniform rules which are directly applicable (no ‘harmonised harmonisation directives’) and easily enforceable by adhering to market authorities and consumer organisations and in regular courts, at low costs.